Austin TX Real Estate - Hill Country Austin Lakeway Homes for Sale: Don't Mess with Texas - Slogan History

Don't Mess with Texas - Slogan History

Do you know the slogan Don't Mess with Texas? Do you know how it started?  I moved to Texas when I was a kid in the summer of 1984. A few months later is when the Don't Mess with Texas slogan started showing up everywhere and being heard all over the radio. To me, I assumed it had always been around, but we just happened to move at the same time it was starting...

Don't Mess with TexasThe Don't Mess with Texas slogan began as a litter campaign for our highways.  It took a mind of its own from there and has basically become the unofficial slogan of Texas, like "Everything's bigger and better in Texas."

I read the story on CNN recently, and they mention that the target audience was "bubbas in pickup trucks."  That's pretty funny, but it makes sense because back before extended cab trucks were popular and common, there was no place to put trash, except out the window.  The slogan was also to help with throwing cigarette butts out and helping to prevent fires.

How did the slogan make it so big? Stevie Ray Vaughan was playing "The Eyes of Texas" at the 1986 Cotton Bowl game in Dallas and he ended the song with "Don't mess with Texas" and the rest is history.  CNN mentioned that in 2006, the slogan was awarded a bronze plaque on the "Advertising Week Walk of Fame on New York's Madison Avenue," and it beat out National slogans such as "Got Milk?" and "Just Do It".

And just think if one of the lady's on the committee got her request to add the word "Please". Would it have the same effect? I think not!

For all you people relocating because you hear about how great Texas is and cities like Austin TX are ranked #1 for the "Boom Town" city for the next decade, just remember that Texans love their state and you better not come here and trash it!

**Are You Packed Yet?**

donna harris Realtor Austin TX blog

Donna Harris, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Austin Skyline

Austin TX Real Estate

and the surrounding areas of Lakeway, Bee Cave, West Lake Hills, Cedar Park, Round Rock, Spicewood, Circle-C, Steiner Ranch, and everywhere in between... Hill Country Austin TX Real Estate and beyond. Whether you're buying or selling an Austin home, I'll be with you every step of the way. 

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** Multi-Million Dollar Producer Year after Year **

Copyright© 2011 By Donna Harris, All Rights Reserved. You may re-blog with links back to this post.
Don't Mess with Texas - Slogan History * was first published on

Comment balloon 9 commentsDonna Harris • July 08 2011 11:39AM


Ha, I appreciate that. We were actually talking about the slogan on the 4th. Thanks for sharing!

Posted by Corinne Hale, Your Real Estate Matchmaker (Short Sales, Foreclsoures, 1st time BUYER, Moving UP, Invest) about 9 years ago

We moved to Wichita Falls in 2001 and then to Houston in 2005.....  sorry I didn't get here sooner (but let's not tell my Yankee family how wonderful it is down here <EG>)......

Posted by Alicia Barrington, Houston Home Staging Presents Alicia Barrington (THE ORIGINAL HOUSTON HOME STAGING) about 9 years ago

I have to admit, that is a great slogan. Thanks for the history.

Posted by Matt Brady, The Mortgage Answer Man (Finance Of America) about 9 years ago

Hi Donna~ I thought the same thing, that it had been around FOREVER!  Thanks for the history lesson!

Posted by Donna Foerster, Metro Denver Real Estate Assistant (HomeSmart Realty Group) about 9 years ago

This was a great campaign to try and keep people from throwing trash on our roads.  Some pretty big name entertainers did some great PSA's/

Posted by Richard Weeks, REALTOR®, Broker about 9 years ago

Interesting....I am old enough to remember when we all just threw garbage out the window and then someone came through and cleaned it up. I can't imagine what we were thinking back then, but we all did it.

Posted by Karen Fiddler, Broker/Owner, Orange County & Lake Arrowhead, CA (949)510-2395 (Karen Parsons-Fiddler, Broker 949-510-2395) about 9 years ago

Donna, that's cool! Thanks for sharing that bit of history. I have a friend who is a native New Zealander, and he bought a "Don't Mess with Texas" t-shirt as a piece of memorabilia to proudly display at home. The slogan has gone international!

Posted by David Companik, Realtor ▪ The WoodlandsTX ▪ (Keller Williams Realty - The Woodlands) about 9 years ago

As a Texas native and Stevie Ray fan, I remember the birth of the slogan well. We used to go see SRV at Antone's regularly...aahh those were the days.

Don't Mess With Texas and Keep Austin Weird...

Posted by Tim Bradley, Commercial Real Estate Expert in Jackson Hole, WY (Contour Investment Properties) about 9 years ago

I love this saying in so many ways!

Posted by Rob and Camille Di Maio (San Antonio Real Estate - Keller Williams Legacy) about 9 years ago